Just another Manic Monday

25 Jun

This has nothing to do with re-evaluating my relationship with wine (and other select beverages) – you’ll have to click on the link on the right to go read about that. Tis going well though. Day three (pats self on back)

On Monday morning I had to take Marina and Ryu to the city hall to pick up their Japanese passports. Hub had to go too because he filled in the forms. Technically I didn’t have to be there but they had to get back to kinder and school somehow right?

Primary school age and above children are meant to write their own name if they can in the small space provided. The whole process makes me even more thankful for being able to pop an application form in an envelope and send to NZ and ten days later be in possession of two new passports. What do Japanese expats have to do? Do they physically have to turn up at an embassy or something. What a pain in the ass.

Anyway, it all went fine. Payed the $80 each or whatever and away we go.

As I am driving out of the city hall I have to turn left and as I do I decide, at that exact moment, to put the passports on the dashboard. Usually, when I’m driving in a straight line, I put my arm through the top of the steering wheel. But, I was turning left so what I put my arm through was one of the two smaller bottom gaps – the one with fancy buttons sticking out for restart and menu or some other thing I never use and don’t know what to do with. Passports on dashboard, I go to bring my arm out at the same time I start to straighten up, only the wheel wont straighten because my fat arm is in the gap.

We were veering left straight into the curb by this time so I had to slam on the breaks, we all got a bit of whiplash, and I got a skin flapping bruise on my forearm. It looked a lot worse than it felt – so I panicked a bit. Cause I’m the parent and its always good to lose your shit in front of your kids cause it really calms them down.

Marina starts crying. Ryu, who can’t actually see my arm is in the back half giggling over the bumpy ride and wondering if it is in fact Saturday and a holiday, despite the fact he is in his uniform and we are ‘on the way to kindy’.

I usually have my world-end-earthquake-and-tsunami survival box in the car but it got taken out last weekend in favor of fishing rods and buckets, and never got put back in. Which isn’t the end of world in itself as really I need ice and not a seven-way spade and travel toilet. So we stop at the conbini just up the road and I buy  the closest thing I can find –  a small bag of strawberry flavored shaved ice – and tie it to my arm with a towel from the back seat that I ‘think’ was used to wipe a snotty nose.

We then the Japanese and English versions of ‘Let it go’ back to back for the remaining 25 minute ride to school and kinder.

After dropping them off I check the arm and it is lots better. I then check my phone and see three missed calls from a NZ number I don’t know – which as expats will know just puts you into a fuckin frenzy thinking of all the worst case scenarios that could have happened for someone to call you in Japan from a number you don’t know.

Then I calm the fuck down and listen to the voicemail:

Voicemail: this is your friendly neighborhood bank XNZ. There is an urgent matter we need to discuss with you. Please ring back on this number XXXXXXX as soon as possible. You can call us collect.

Collect? Fuck, it must be serious.

  • Gaijinwife: (dials number) ring ring
  • Call center: Hello, this is XNZ, you’re speaking with ABC, how can I help you?
  • Gaijinwife: Yes, hi. I got a call from you this morning and told to ring urgently. My customer number is blah blah blah and the reference code I got given is blah blah and either N or 10 I’m not sure, couldn’t quite catch it cause a tractor went past.
  • Call center: Oh right, that will be N, just a moment, I’ll just put you through to the correct department.
  • ring ring ring ring
  • Correct Department: Hello, serious credit card fraud, this is John speaking
  • Gaijinwife: bloody hell, I got put through to serious credit card fraud? Shit.
  • John: Yes, we must have picked up something suspicious on your credit card. Name and customer number please. (which I give him – everything is quiet while he gets my details up on his screen)
  • Gaijinwife: and? Whats it looking like?
  • John: I’m afraid its not looking very good.
  • Gaijinwife (fuckin freaking out)
  • John: There was a transaction from a suspicious looking account in the US on Friday.
  • Gaijinwife: how much (thinking I’m about to lose all the money I need for our NZ immersion)
  • John: three dollars and sixty nine cents.
  • Gaijinwife: … …..
  • John: So we cancelled your card which is why I presume you used your debit card for the transactions for the Agrodome and the Maori Culture Village bookings on Sunday?
  • Gaijinwife: Um, yes. wondered why my card was getting declined. Good to know your systems are on top of everything and just go ahead and cancel cards though. (am actually relieved as have used visa far too many times on internet after drinking wine lately so having it cancelled is blessing)

So that was the start to Monday!!

Hope you all started the week better than I did!



7 Responses to “Just another Manic Monday”

  1. merry June 25, 2014 at 5:32 am #

    I probably would have laughed. $3.69. I mean, glad it wasn’t more- I had some dude playing Facebook games with my credit card once. It blows. But after that morning? Hahaha

    • gaijinwife June 25, 2014 at 6:08 am #

      Totally agree. Couldn’t believe they went ahead and cancelled without telling me over that!! But glad their security is so good I guess 🙂 Much better morning this morning 🙂

  2. hamakkomommy June 25, 2014 at 6:29 am #

    Similar thing happened to me recently. The credit card, not the bruised arm. How is it feeling today?

    • gaijinwife June 25, 2014 at 10:04 pm #

      It looks worse today because its bruising and not just a small slash on the forearm. Feels fine though 🙂 Thank you.

  3. Susan June 25, 2014 at 8:50 pm #

    How weird – we once got a call where there was a fraudulent charge on our credit card account – the bastards managed to spend over $300.00 at an electronics store before they were stopped at the next store where they tried it out. But … I’ve never had someone make a charge from another country.Glad they were so on top of things.

  4. kireikireikirei June 26, 2014 at 3:05 am #

    I’m sorry about your accident. Good thing the cc fraud was caught! Did you notice that there is a question asking about other passports on the application? It doesn’t matter for now, but later it could pose a problem for people wanting to keep their two passports. XX

    • gaijinwife June 26, 2014 at 6:12 am #

      Yes, there is a question on the Japanese application form isn’t there. I think its OK until you are 20 at which time you aren meant to choose. NZ is fine though. It is OK to have dual citizenship and have two passports. I hope Japan will get over its stagnated way of thinking and allow adults to have two passports two!!

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